Medals and the Man

Monthly Feature

Medals and the Man

February 2024

Sjt Maj R Harman

Sjt Maj Harman's group of medals in unique to the Regiment; his is the only award of the Serbian Gold Medal for Bravery. This was 'gazetted' in February 1917, unfortunately there is no citation other than 'For Services in The Middle East'. Probably for action in 1916 and possibly from the Battle of Romani in August.

He enlisted at Hereford in late 1914 and was given regimental number 1822.

He served with the Battalion at Suvla Bay, Gallipoli and then in the Middle East and the Western Front; he was renumbered 235451 and was discharged 29 January 1919.

He re-enlisted in July 1921 as 4103351 aged 24 and 5 months and attended every annual camp from 1921 until 1939. He took part in the 1935 Jubilee Parade and the Coronation parade in London and was accordingly awarded the 1935 Jubilee Medal. He was transferred to the Gloucestershire Provisional Battalion as unfit for overseas service and discharged as unfit for service in July 1941.

His Second World War service entitled him to the War Medal and it is for speculation whether he joined the Home Guard - if he did and served for 3 years he would have also been entitles to the Defence medal.

He died in 1966.

January 2024

Barnham and Baynham

This month we are featuring 2 medal groups which caused some confusion to the Regimental management team!

The 2 medal groups, which are almost the same, were donated to the Museum on successive days, but one group the Curator and the other to his assistant the other not knowing that there were 2 separate donations. Several days later they met and were discussing recent donations and both mentioned the donation they had received but each believed that the other was quoting the wrong surname and a ‘healthy’ discussion took place – eventually the fact that there were 2 similarly named and similar groups was established!

Both groups consist of the 39/45 Star, France & Germany Star, Defence, War and Efficiency Medal (Territorial) Medals; Baynham’s medal include a bar to the Efficiency Medal.

4105393 Pte Cyril Baynham lived at The Callow and enlisted into the Herefordshire Regiment at Hereford 1 May 1939 aged 18 years and one month. He transferred to the Royal Welsh Fusiliers where he was awarded the Efficiency Medal; He later served in the MT Section of the Herefordshire Light Infantry where he was awarded the Bar to the medal.

4105136 Pte Harry Barnham lived in Westfields, Hereford and enlisted into the Herefordshire Regiment at Hereford 20 March 1939 aged 29 and 3 months. He was promoted corporal and served in the Carrier Platoon.

December 2023

Maj ALB Green DSO TD

Major Arthur Llewellyn Baldwin Green was a medical doctor practicing in Ross On Wye but he served in the Herefordshire Regiment during The First World War as an infantry officer and was a Company Commander. He had previously served with The Herefordshire Rifle Volunteers.

He sailed with the Battalion for Suvla Bay on board the Euripides.

He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order (DSO) for services in the Middle East in 1917 and was also mentioned in Despatches in July 1917 and January 1918. He was awarded the Territorial Decoration (TD) in May 1919. He was also awarded the 1953 Coronation Medal for services to The British Legion.

He was severely wounded at Suvla Bay and one resident of Ross On Wye, who was a patient of 'Dr' Green said - I was 4 years old and he was our family doctor, in practice at Ross until he retired. A lovely man, and although one knew he had been badly wounded, I doubt whether anyone had ever heard of his DSO. Very modest and unassuming, and much loved by his patients.

His medals are held in the Regimental Museum as is a watch he was wearing which was hit by a Turkish bullet and possibly saved his life.

November 2023

4036782 Private TA Robins

Pte Tom Robins was one of 4 brothers that served with the Herefordshire Regiment in World War 2.

His 3 brothers were all pre-war members of the Herefordshire Regiment – William (Bill), Edward and Ronald (Reg). The fourth brother Tom joined the Kings Shropshire Light Infantry, was transferred to the Durham Light Infantry and served for 14 months in Iceland in 1940/41. He was ‘claimed’ by his eldest brother William for The Herefordshire Regiment. The ‘claiming’ system allowed fathers to claim their sons and brothers to claim their siblings to serve with them in the same regiment.

Tom was awarded the standard 4 medals for service in North West Europe – these are common as they were issued to all troops in NWE – but only the man wearing the medals knew what he had done to earn the medals. Tom was an infantryman in a frontline battalion – his medals would surely tell of a harrowing and demanding experience!

Bill and Reg were both wounded but Tom and Edward were unscathed.

After the war the 4 brothers supported the Regimental Association and Reg and Tom revisited the battlefields.

Reg was awarded the French Legion d’honour by the French Government as a veteran of the Normandy campaign on the 70th anniversary of D Day.